Saturday, September 20, 2003

Motion aims to defend commandments

The Associated Press

COLUMBUS - A state lawmaker wants to protect the display of the Ten Commandments in public buildings in Ohio.

Republican state Rep. Mike Gilb has offered a resolution, with 15 co-sponsors, that declares that the biblical mandates are the moral foundation of state government.

Gilb says the measure is a response to recent court decisions in Alabama that posting of the commandments in a public building violated the U.S. Constitution's ban on government promotion of a religious doctrine.

In Gilb's hometown of Findlay, the Ten Commandments are displayed on the second floor of the Hancock County Courthouse.

Gilb hopes his resolution will provide a legal argument for attorneys who defend displays of the commandments in public buildings.

The commandments "are and must remain the foundation on which we base our ethical, moral and legal dilemmas," he said. "I hate to see the foundation being whittled away."

The resolution calls for legislators to write laws with the purpose of upholding the Ten Commandments, and says the commandments' validity and timelessness "never be questioned."

Gilb's resolution has been referred to the Ohio House's State Government Committee.

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